• Monday, August 08, 2022

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Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa departs for Singapore from Maldives

The country is facing a severe shortage of fuel and other essential supplies and is in the throes of its worst economic crisis with soaring inflation.

Sri Lanka President Gotabaya Rajapaksa (Photo by Andy Buchanan – Pool/Getty Images)

By: Melvin Samuel

Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who reached the Maldivian Capital Male following raging protests in Sri Lanka, departed for Singapore today.

Rajapaksa left the Maldives and is on his way to Singapore on a private jet, the Daily Mirror reported citing a source. Earlier, a private jet landed in Male for Rajapaksa’s departure from the island country for Singapore, the Daily Mirror said.

Rajapaksa, his wife Ioma Rajapaksa, and two security officials were scheduled to board a Singapore Airlines flight last night from Male to Singapore but did not go ahead as scheduled due to security concerns, according to the Daily Mirror.

73-year-old Gotabaya Rajapaksa had gone into hiding after crowds of protesters stormed his residence on July 9 and he had announced that he will hand over his resignation letter on Wednesday.

Later, Rajapaksa along with his wife escaped to the Maldives. Subsequently, he appointed Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe as the interim President of Sri Lanka.

Meanwhile, in Sri Lanka, the curfew is imposed from 12 pm today till 5 am tomorrow within the Colombo District, the government information department announced.

Earlier in the day, “GotaGoGama” protesters announced that they will peacefully hand over government-occupied buildings including President’s house, Presidential Secretariat, and Prime Minister’s office, aiming to restore peace in the country.

The country is facing a severe shortage of fuel and other essential supplies and is in the throes of its worst economic crisis with soaring inflation. The oil supply shortage has forced schools and government offices to close until further notice.

Reduced domestic agricultural production, a lack of foreign exchange reserves, and local currency depreciation have fuelled the shortages.

The economic crisis will push families into hunger and poverty – some for the first time – adding to the half a million people who the World Bank estimates have fallen below the poverty line because of the pandemic.

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